A New Mexico legislator is advocating for the reinstatement of capital punishment, which would be administered to those convicted of crimes related to juvenile rape.
2009 saw the abolition of executions in New Mexico, as reported by KOB-TV in Albuquerque.
On the contrary, Republican state representative Stefani Lord is advocating for a measure that she has introduced, which would impose capital punishment on individuals convicted of specific sex offenses against minors.
Lord stated that the revelations contained in documents that detail the scope of the sex trafficking empire managed by Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell, as reported by Fox News, provided the impetus to introduce HB 109.
The lawmaker stated that Epstein has ties to New Mexico: Sexual abuse was discovered on a property owned by Epstein in the state, and former New Mexico governor Bill Richardson was named in a recently released cache of documents pertaining to the deceased sex offender.
An allegation from a 2016 deposition that Richardson received a massage from one of Epstein’s victims was included in the documents. Richardson passed away one year ago.
“When I got elected, I was horrified that every time the legislature tried to pass a soft-on-crime bill, I would say, ‘Well, can we exempt pedophiles and rapists?’ And every time the Democrats said no,” Lord told Fox News.
“I was horrified, so I went back and said, ‘You know what? There is no cure for pedophilia. There’s no cure for these rapists. So we might as well do like Florida did and give them the death penalty,’” she said.
In May, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, a Republican presidential candidate, signed legislation authorizing the death penalty for child rape convictions.
Florida State Attorney William Gladson declared last month that the newly implemented death penalty legislation would be put to the test in the case involving an individual accused of six counts of sexual battery against a minor and three counts of encouraging a juvenile to perform a sexual act.
According to a report by Fox News, convictions for first-degree felony counts of aggravated criminal sexual penetration of a child and criminal penetration of a child would carry automatic death sentences under Lord’s bill.
Under her proposal, an individual convicted of a first-degree felony related to child sex trafficking would also be subject to capital punishment.
Additionally, it would increase the minimum age for protection of minors from 13 to 18.
“There is no life. There’s no option for life in prison. You rape a child that is under 18, then you get the death penalty,” Lord said.
New Mexico Rep. Suggests Death Penalty for Pedophiles
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Lord acknowledged the bill has a hard road to travel for passage.
“I would gladly hand this bill over to a Democrat if they could get this passed. I have no problem with that. I don’t need to take credit for it. The issue is we need to stop the sex trafficking. We need to stop that. There’s so much leniency against pedophiles and people that rape children. This needs to stop,” she said.
“We have to draw the line. We have to draw a line in the sand and say enough is enough. If you do this, you’re going to get the death penalty,” Lord said.